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Lisbon voters approve bond measures for major school upgrades

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UPDATE 2/6/18 8:16 p.m.: According to the Lisbon Community School District, voters approved three bond measures Tuesday night, slated to bring $9 million in updates and additions for students.

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A special election on 3 bond measures in the Lisbon Community School District could bring about $9 million in updates and additions.

District leaders say some areas haven't been updated in more than 50 years.

However, with 3 measures to vote on the ballot can be confusing.

"You have to get a yes on question one to go to two and yes on two to go to three," says Superintendent Pat Hocking.

The first measure would essentially extend the district’s current $2.70 levy to fund $4.2 million in classroom updates.

"That's going to go into a few classes that are going to be totally renovated and then there is another section of classes that is just going to be renovated with new lighting, new windows, ceilings, types of things like that," explains Hocking.

The money would also help pay for major updates to heating and cooling systems.

Hocking says the goal is to take classrooms built in 50's and 60's and turn them into more flexible learning environments with new technology and furnishings that allow for a more flexible an collaborative learning environment.

"It's kind of funny you listen to some of the patrons around here they say the schools the same as when they graduated," laughs hocking, noting that they have made do with what they have for a long time.

Science Teacher, Shannon walker, says aging facilities make it difficult for her high school students to get hands-on experience.

"It's hard to do all of the labs with chemistry that I would like to do because the fume hood doesn't work and not all the gas valves work and not all the sinks drain appropriately," explains Walker.

The second measure on the ballot asks to increase the levy by $1.35 to $4.05 per $1,000 of assessed property value.

"The average house in Lisbon is about $175,000 and the $1.35 will have an impact of about $120 $130 a year," says Hocking.

The final measure would authorize the district to invest the $5 million in the construction of a new auditorium and upgrade athletic facilities, including construction of a track around the football field.

Hocking says track is popular at the school and right now students run on area roads.

"In the spring their track is out on the streets with the traffic and some of those dangers that lie with that."

Early voting yielded 250 votes in a district with 2,301 eligible voters.

At 3:00 p.m. Tuesday, Linn County Elections 281 voters had gone to the polls putting participation at 24%.

Voting continues until 8:00 p.m. Tuesday at Lisbon City Hall.

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